Formula One FAQ (modified 3/14/97) Part 1/2

You obviously already have a copy of this FAQ but if you don't have the most up to date version you can get it from: http://www.ultranet.com/~mitchmcc/ It is also posted on or about the 15th of each month ...

You obviously already have a copy of this FAQ but if you don't have the most up to date version you can get it from:

http://www.ultranet.com/~mitchmcc/

It is also posted on or about the 15th of each month to: rec.autos.sport.f1 rec.autos.sport.info rec.answers news.answers

This version was most recently updated on March 14, 1997.

The following list of Frequently Asked Questions has been put together with the help many people and their input is greatly appreciated. All contributors are acknowledged at the end of this FAQ and sections which are substantially the work of one person are denoted with that persons initials.

This FAQ is a work in progress and further submissions in the way of questions and/or answers are encouraged. You can e-mail me, Mitchell McCann, at mitchmcc@ultranet.com

Please note that there is also a r.a.s.* FAQ by Andrew Henry which contains a lot of information that is of interest to F1 fans. Unfortunately, that FAQ is no longer being updated so some of the information may be dated but it is still well worth reading.

1. INTRODUCTION 1.1 1997 F1 schedule 1.2 What is Formula One? What is the FIA? What is FOCA? 2. THE TEAMS 2.1 Benetton 2.2 Ferrari 2.3 Jordan 2.4 Lola 2.5 McLaren 2.6 Minardi 2.7 Prost 2.8 Sauber 2.9 Stewart 2.10 TWR Arrows 2.11 Tyrrell 2.12 Williams

3. THE DRIVERS 3.1 Jean Alesi 3.2 Rubens Barrichello 3.3 Gerhard Berger 3.4 David Coulthard 3.5 Pedro Diniz 3.6 Giancarlo Fisichella 3.7 Heinz-Harald Frentzen 3.8 Mika Hakkinen 3.9 Johnny Herbert 3.10 Damon Hill 3.11 Eddie Irvine 3.12 Ukyo Katayama 3.13 Nicola Larini 3.14 Jan Magnussen 3.15 Shinji Nakano 3.16 Olivier Panis 3.17 Ricardo Rosset 3.18 Mika Salo 3.19 Michael Schumacher 3.20 Ralf Schumacher 3.21 Vincenzo Sospiri 3.22 Jarno Trulli 3.23 Jos Verstappen 3.24 Jacques Villeneuve

4. THE RULES 4.1 How many points are scored for a win? 4.2 Is that a brake light on the back of the cars? 4.3 The start. 4.4 The finish. 4.5 What is the safety car for? 4.6 What is a stop-go penalty? 4.7 What do the different colored flags mean? 4.8 Is mid-race re-fueling allowed? 4.9 What is the 107% rule? 5. THE CARS 5.1 Why V10 engines? 5.2 How big are the engines? 5.3 How much does a car weigh? 5.4 What is the tub made of? 5.5 How many gears do the cars have? 5.6 Interesting engine facts. 5.7 What are those red boxes on the Williams' mirror.

6. MISCELLANEOUS 6.1 What happens during a pit-stop? 6.2 Sponsorship. 6.3 What's the difference between F1 and Indy? 6.4 How many teams are there? 6.5 What is the connection between Ford and Cosworth? 6.6 What radio frequencies do the teams use? 6.7 How can you tell team-mates apart? 6.8 Why is Frank Williams in a wheelchair? 6.9 What's the best Formula One movie ever made? 6.10 What happened at Imola in 1994?

7. NETIQUETTE

8. WEB SITES

9. TICKET INFORMATION

10. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________

1. INTRODUCTION

1.1 1997 schedule

Date Grand Prix of City Winner

March 9 Australia Melbourne Coulthard March 30 Brazil Sao Paulo April 13 Argentina Buenos Aires April 27 San Marino Imola May 11 Monaco Monaco May 25 Spain Barcelona June 15 Canada Montreal June 29 France Magny-Cours July 13 Britain Silverstone July 27 Germany Hockenheim August 10 Hungary Budapest August 24 Belgium Spa-Francorchamps September 7 Italy Monza September 21 Austria Zeltweg September 28 Luxembourg Nuerburgring October 12 Japan Suzuka October 26 Portugal Estoril

1.2 What is Formula One? What is the FIA? What is FOCA? [AH]

FIA politics is really grungy stuff. The Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) is the governing and sanctioning body for the FIA World Driver's Championship, which is run to a set of technical and procedural regulations and specifications known as Formula One. The FIA's competition committee, which consists of representatives of the motor sport organizing bodies of the member countries (eg ACCUS represents the US, the RAC represents the UK, the FFSA represents France), sets the F1 regulations, interprets them, and judges any appeals or disputes.

The Formula One Constructor's Association (FOCA) is an organization of the chassis builders (constructors) who design and build the cars that race in the F1 Grands Prix. Since the rules these days say that a constructor can supply cars to only one team, constructor and team are more or less synonymous.

Max Mosley (son of British fascist leader Oswald Mosley) is the president of the FIA and is in charge of its day-to-day operations. Bernie Ecclestone, who used to own and manage the Brabham F1 team, is the president of the FOCA and also the vice-president of marketing for the FIA. Originally, all the F1 Grands Prix were independent events, independently financed and organized within their host countries. The FIA merely set the technical regulations for F1, and designated certain Grands Prix to be the qualifying rounds for the Driver's and Constructor's Championships. Up until sometime in the 1970s, there were other Grands Prix held besides those races included in the FIA Championship. But the idea of non-Championship Grands Prix died out as it became more and more expensive to hold F1 events. As time went by, the Constructor's Association (FOCA) took on a bigger and bigger role in the business side of Grand Prix racing. They organized and coordinated the sponsorship of the events, sold the television rights, and did the logistics and financing of moving the Grand Prix `circus' from country to country.

Then, in the late 1970s, Jean-Marie Balestre was elected as head of the Committee du Sport Internationale (CSI), the committee of the FIA directly involved in supervising F1. He decided that the FIA should take back more control over the sport. When he tried to impose his will autocratically, Bernie Ecclestone and the other constructors in FOCA resisted. There was a big power struggle between FISA (Federation Internationale du Sport Automotive, Balestre's new name for the CSI) and FOCA in the early 1980s. Some Grands Prix got cancelled or had their championship status stripped as a result. In the end, FISA and the FIA won out over the FOCA, mainly, I think, because the teams were not unanimously behind the FOCA (not all constructors were FOCA members), and because the sponsors, race organizers, and others involved in Grand Prix racing prevailed on both sides to settle things amicably. But for a while, the FOCA was talking about forming a new F1 championship series comprising the races that it organized, while the FIA of course was threatening to refuse sanctioning for those races. There almost were two `World Championship' series. Later on, Bernie Ecclestone was appointed marketing director for the FIA, but he still retains his presidency of FOCA. So Bernie is still in charge of the organizational and financial side of Grand Prix racing, but now officially as part of the FIA instead of in an independent organization.

The agreement between FISA and FOCA over control of F1 is called the Concorde Agreement. Among other things, it says that except in the case of emergencies, changes to technical regulations must be announced two years in advance of the date of adoption, unless all constructors agree unanimously to adopt the regulations earlier. This came up in 1994 because Max Mosley wanted to introduce several major technical changes in the wake of a series of fatal and near-fatal accidents in F1. He made these changes without the unanimous agreement called for by the Concorde Agreement, by claiming that this was an emergency situation.

So Max Mosley, as FIA president, is responsible for setting rules and policy for F1, but he's limited by the Concorde Agreement in how quickly and how far he can push things his way. Since Bernie Ecclestone still controls the purse strings for Grand Prix racing, he still carries a lot of clout. As for `can somebody take it away', the FIA president is elected by the representatives from the member countries. When Max Mosley's current term is up, he could be voted out. Similarly, I think that the constructors could oust Ecclestone if they wanted to.

2. THE TEAMS

2.1 Benetton Engine: Renault RS9 Nationality: Italian (nominally British until '96) Key personnel: Flavio Briatore - Managing Director Year formed: 1970 - Toleman Formula 1 debut: 1981 1996 car/drivers: B196 - Alesi, Berger 1997 car/drivers: B197 - Alesi, Berger Address: Benetton Formula Ltd. Whiteways Technical Centre Enstone, Chipping Norton Oxfordshire OX8 6XZ U.K.

Benetton entered Formula 1 as a sponsor of the Tyrrell team in 1983 and then Alfa Romeo in '84 and '85. On January 1st 1986 they made the leap from sponsorship to ownership, buying the Toleman team and moving into their premises in Witney in England.In their first season they achieved two poles, one victory (Berger at the Mexican GP) and 6th place in the constructor's championship and they have improved steadily ever since.

>From '87 - '90 they finished 5th, 3rd, 4th and 3rd in the championship. In '91 Schumacher made his F1 debut and was signed to a full time ride in '92 partnered by Martin Brundle. Schumacher and Benetton finished their respective championships in 3rd. They could not improve on their performance in '93 but by '94 Schumacher had become a force to be reckoned with and he took the driver's championship in controversial fashion at the end of a controversial season. In 95 Benetton completed the sweep of driver's and constructor's championships with relative ease. 96 was a disappointing year with design problems, engine failure and lack-lustre driving performances leaving the team without a victory and only third place in the constructor's championship.

2.2 Ferrari Engine: Ferrari Nationality: Italian Key personnel: Luca Cordero di Montezemolo - Chairman Jean Todt - Sport Director Ross Braun - Technical director Year formed: 1929 Formula 1 debut: 1950 1996 car/drivers: F310 - Schumacher, Irvine 1997 car/drivers: F310B - Schumacher, Irvine Address: Ferrari SpA Casella Postale 589 Via Emilia 1163 I-41100 Maranello (Modena) Italy

Founded by Enzo Ferrari in 1929, Ferrari is the oldest team in F1 and the only one to have raced since the beginning of F1 in 1950. Scuderia Ferrari was initially formed as an engineering-racing division of Alfa Romeo for whom Ferrari had worked since 1920. Ferrari abandoned the Alfa connection in 1940 and after the war began designing and building the very first Ferrari. In 1969 Fiat bought a 50% stake in the company and became majority shareholder in 1988.

>From 1950 - 1995, 86 drivers have driven for Ferrari, 31 winning at least 1 GP, for a total of 105 victories, 114 pole positions, 9 driver's titles and 8 constructor's titles (since '58) - all records.

Driver's titles went to: Ascari (52, 53), Fangio (56), Hawthorn (58), P.Hill(61), Surtees (64), Lauda (75, 77) and Schekter (79). Winningest drivers are: Lauda 15, Ascari 13, Ickx 6, Villeneuve 6, Berger 5, Prost 5, Reutemann 5.

Ferrari won the constructor's championship in: 61, 64, 75, 76, 77, 79, 82 and 83.

Michael Schumacher's recruitment for the 1996 season seemed to rejuvinate the team and, after a string of embarrassing mechanical failures, the team managed three victories and 2nd place in the constructor's championship.

2.3 Jordan Engine: Peugeot Nationality: Irish Key personnel: Owner - Eddie Jordan Chief Designer - Gary Anderson Year formed: 1980 Formula 1 debut: 1991 1996 car/drivers: 196 - Barrichello, Brundle 1997 car/drivers: 197 - Fisichella, R.Schumacher Address: Jordan Grand Prix Silverstone Circuit Towcester Northamptonshire NN12 8TN

Eddie Jordan raced in karts, FF1600, Formula Atlantic, F3 and F2 and was a test driver for McLaren before establishing Eddie Jordan Racing in 1980 initially to support his own racing career. He retired from driving in 1981 to concentrate on running the team. He signed David Sears to drive a Ralt-Toyota in the 1981 British F3 series. The team started its first event from the front row and ended up on the rostrum after finishing second.

Between 1981 and 1989 the team ran several F3 cars in Britain, Europe, France and in 1985 they also began competing in the newly created F3000. During these years many drivers took a seat in Jordan cars including Martin Brundle, Stefan Johansson, David Hunt, Johnny Herbert, Jean Alesi and a first F3 test for Ayrton Senna in August '82. The Jordan team was a consistent race winner and narrowly missed out on the Championships before securing the F3 title in 1987 with Herbert winning 5 races. They won the F3000 championship in 1989 with Alesi beating out Herbert.

As the move towards F1 gathered pace, Jordan concentrated his efforts solely on F3000 in 1990, running three Mugen powered Reynards for Eddie Irvine, Heinz Harald Frentzen and Emanuele Naspetti. Irvine was the dominant of the three gaining 3rd place in the championship with a race win at Hockenheim. Jordan was still active in F3000 in 1991 with the two-car Team Barclay EJR though an uncompetitive chassis prevented Damon Hill and Vincenzo Sospiri from achieving better results than a 2nd at Hockenheim (Sospiri) a third place at Nogard (Hill).

The fledgling F1 team however were to prove the success story of the motorsport year. Jordan Grand Prix took the F1 establishment by surprise in 1991 finishing an unprecedented 5th in the Constructor's championship in their first season.

1992 was to be a frustrating year and the team only scored one championship point at the final race in Adelaide. It was announced at the Australian GP that Jordan had signed an exclusive agreement with Brian Hart for the supply of his new V10 engine for the 93 and 94 seasons. A few weeks later Rubens Barrichello was signed to the team. The team did not score points in 93 until the penultimate round in Japan with Barrichello finishing 5th followed by F1 newcomer Eddie Irvine making his GP debut.

The team was much improved in 94 retaining both drivers and engine partner. Despite Irvine's three race ban for his involvement in the incident at the Brazilian GP, the team finished the year with 28 points, 5th place in the constructors, a rostrum finish and a pole position - both courtesy of Barrichello.

In October 94 Jordan announced that they had signed a three year exclusive engine deal with Peugeot. The team maintained the same driver line-up but the team did not live up to their promise scoring just two rostrum finishes - 2nd and 3rd at the Canadian GP. The same driver line-up was again announced for '96 but just one week later Eddie Irvine was lured away by Ferrari - Jordan receiving several million in compensation from the Italian team. Martin Brundle has returned to the Jordan team taking Irvine's place. Entering the season with high expectations, 96 turned out to be a big disappointment. The Peugeot was rumored to be one of the best engines but the chassis handled badly and both drivers complained about it for pretty much the entire season. Neither driver was retained for 97!

2.4 Lola Engine: Ford EC4 Nationality: British Key personnel: Year formed: Formula 1 debut: 1985 1996 car/drivers: None 1997 car/drivers: T97/30 - Rosset, Sospiri Address: Lola Cars Ltd Glebe Road St Peter's Hill Huntingdon Cambs. PE18 7DS U.K.

Lola first competed in F1 as the supplier to Team Haas in 1985 and 86. From 87 until '91 they teamed up with Larousse and Ford, then Lambourghini, then Ford again. They took a year off in 92 before returning for one season in '93 with BMS Scuderia Italia, Ferrari engines and Alboreto and Badoer driving. Since then they have concentrated on their Indy chassis and 1997 marks their return to F1.

2.5 McLaren Engine: Mercedes Nationality: British Key personnel: Managing Director - Ron Dennis Chief Designer - Neil Oatley Year formed: 1963 - Bruce McLaren Motor Racing Ltd. Formula 1 debut: 1966 - Monaco 1996 car/drivers: MP4/11 - Coulthard, Hakkinen 1997 car/drivers: MP4/12 - Coulthard, Hakkinen Address: McLaren International Ltd. Woking Business Park Albert Drive Woking, Surrey GU 21 5JY U.K.

Bruce McLaren founded the team that bears his name in 1963. Their F1 debut came in 1966 and their first GP win was in 1968 in Belgium with Bruce himself at the wheel. Bruce McLaren died in 1970 while testing a Can-Am sportscar at Goodwood. Having signed up with Marlboro in '74, a partnership that persists to this day, McLaren won driver (Fittipaldi) and constructor's championships and then the driver's championship again in '76 (Hunt).

In 1980, at the urging of mutual sponsor Marlboro, the team merged with Ron Dennis' Project Four to form McLaren International (The MP4 in the car designation stands for Marlboro Project Four). In '84, switching from Ford to Porsche TAG, McLaren again won both driver's and constructor's championships with Lauda beating Prost to the driver's title by half a point. This marked the beginning of McLaren's domination of F1 which was to last through the 91 season. Switching to Honda in 1988, they won constructor's championships in 84, 85, 88, 89, 90 and 91. They were equally successful in the driver's championship winning in 85 and 86 (Prost), 88 (Senna), 89 (Prost), 90 and 91 (Senna). Due to this long period of almost complete dominance, McLaren is second only to Ferrari with 104 GP wins, 7 constructor's titles and 9 driver's titles.

Despite switching engines in 93 (Ford), 94 (Peugeot) and 95 (Mercedes), McLaren has not been able to re-create this success and has not won a GP since 1993. They finished 95 and 96 in fourth place but by the end of 96 they did seem to be making some progress. Hakkinen began appearing on the podium regularly towards the end of the season and they might have even won a race had the pace car not ruined their one-stop strategy at Spa. With the continuity of drivers and engines for 97, McLaren could take some steps back towards the front of the pack.

2.6 Minardi Engine: Ford Nationality: Italian Key personnel: Owners - Flavio Briatore - Gian Carlo Minardi - Giuseppe Lucchini Technical director - Mauro Gennari Year formed: 1974 Formula 1 debut: 1985 1996 car/drivers: M195B- Fisichella, Lamy, Lavaggi, Marques 1997 car/drivers: M197 - Katayama, Trulli Address: Minardi Scuderia Italia Via Spallanzani 21 Faenza (RA) Italy

Based on the experience accumulated in motor racing with the 'Scuderia del Passatore' in 1972 and "Scuderia Everest' in 1974 Gian Carlo Minardi felt capable of constructing his own cars and in 1979 he founded the Minardi team in association with Piero Mancini and Giacomo Caliri. The first Minardi F2 cars, equipped with BMW engines, got good results such as Alboreto's win at Misano. In 1985 Minardi entered F1 with a car driven by Pierluigi Martini and powered by a Motori Moderni turbo engine. In 1986 a big jump was foreseen and the signing of qualified drivers such as Andrea de Cesaris and Alessandro Nannini testified to that. Unfortunately the sophisticated technology of the turbo engines and reliability problems didn't allow the achievement of significant results. In 1988 Minardi switched to Ford Cosworth engines and signed Spanish drivers Luis Sala and Adrian Campos. After the Canadian GP, Campos retired and was replaced by Martini who scored Minardi's first championship point with 6th place in Detroit.

In 1989 Martini and Sala scored top six finishes and Martini started third on the grid twice. In 1990 Sala was replaced by Paolo Barilla. The high point of the season, during which Minardi did not score any points, was Martini's front row start at the U.S. GP. In 1991 Minardi adopted the V12 Ferrari engine and after struggling with it at the beginning of the season finished 7th in the constructor's championship. In 92 they switched drivers and engines going with the Lamborghini V12 and Gianni Morbidelli and Christian Fittipaldi but scored only one point. 93 was a slightly better year with Fittipaldi and Fabrizio Barbazza both scoring points to give Minardi 8th place in the constructor's championship.

In 1994 Minardi merged with the Scuderia Italia to form the current team - Minardi Scuderia Italia. Powered by a Ford HB engine and driven by Martini and Michele Alboreto the team scored 5 points finishing 10th. 1995 represented another step backwards with the driver combination of Martini, Badoer and Lamy scoring just one point. 96 was no better and they were forced to take on rent-a-driver Giovanni Lavaggi for several races. On the bright side, Flavio Briatore has taken a financial stake in the team and it remains to be seen how his influence will affect the team.

2.7 Prost Engine: Honda Nationality: French Key personnel: Owner - Alain Prost Technical Director - Andre de Cortanze Year formed: 1969 (Ligier) Formula 1 debut: 1976 (Ligier) 1996 car/drivers: JS43 - Diniz, Panis 1997 car/drivers: JS45 - Nakano, Panis Address: Technopole de la Nievre 58470 Magny Cours France

As part of an effort to field an all-French team, Alain Prost early in 1997 completed the purchase of the Ligier team for $30 million. They will continue to use the Mugen Honda engine for this season but will take over the very promising Peugeot works deal from Jordan for 1998. It is thought that this development may prompt Michelin to make a return to F1.

2.8 Sauber Engine: Ferrari V10 (badged as Petronas) Nationality: Swiss Key personnel: Owner - Peter Sauber Chief Designer - Leo Ress Year formed: 1968 Formula 1 debut: 1993 1996 car/drivers: C15 - Frentzen, Herbert 1997 car/drivers: C16 - Herbert, Larini Address: Wildbachstrasse 9 CH-8340 Hinwil Switzerland

1968 Founding of PP Sauber AG 1977 First start for a Sauber (C5) at the 24 Hours if Le Mans. 1984 Sauber and Mercedes-Benz commence motorsport co-operation. 1986 Sauber cars start five rounds of the Sports Car World Championship; Sauber C8 wins Nurburgring 1000km race. 1988 Sauber cars win 5 out of 10 WSC races and the team finishes second in the Team's World Championship. 1989 Sauber C9 "Silver Arrows" secure WSC Championship and Teams' World Championship after taking 7 victories in eight races (three double wins); Sauber C9s finish 1st, 2nd and 5th at Le Mans. 1990 Sauber C11 secures WSC Drivers' and Teams' titles for the 2nd consecutive year. 1992 February 4; Sauber announces commencement of F1 project. 1993 Sauber finishes in 7th place in the F1 Constructors' championship. 1994 Sauber finishes in 8th place in the F1 Constructors' championship. 1995 Sauber finishes in 7th place in the F1 Constructors' championship.

2.9 Stewart Engine: Ford Nationality: British Key personnel: Jackie Stewart Year formed: 1997 Formula 1 debut: 1997 1996 car/drivers: N/A 1997 car/drivers: SF1 - Barrichello, Magnussen Address: Stewart Grand Prix 16 Tanners Drive Blakelands Milton Keynes MK14 5BW U.K.

2.10 TWR Arrows Engine: Yamaha Nationality: British Key personnel: Tom Walkinshaw - owner Year formed: 1977 Formula 1 debut: 1978 1996 car/drivers: FA17 - Rosset, Verstappen 1997 car/drivers: FA18 - Diniz, Hill Address: TWR Leafield Leafield Nr. Shipton-upon-Witchwood Oxfordshire, UK

Founded in 1977 by Jackie Oliver and Alan Rees, Arrows is currently the oldest F1 team never to have a won a GP. Their most successful season was 1988 when Eddie Cheever and Derek Warwick took them to 5th place in the constructor's championship.

In 1989 the team was bought by the Japanese courier company Footwork. In 94 following Footwork's financial problems, Oliver and Rees regained control of the team although the Footwork name lingered on (as far as the car designation is concerned) due to FOCA rules which meant that the team would have lost their travel money from FOCA if they had switched names - this rule could have been waived with the consent of all the teams but Ron Dennis and at least one other refused to sign off on the waiver. In 1996, having been unable to gain full control of Ligier, Tom Walkinshaw bought the Arrows team bringing in many of his TWR people from Ligier. The name of the TEAM has been changed to TWR Arrows but the car is still designated as a Footwork.

In September, after Williams announced that they would not retain Damon Hill, Arrows made the shock announcement that they had secured the World Champions services for 1997. With a new driver, engine supplier and tyre supplier, TWR Arrows looks set to improve considerably on last years uninspiring 9th place performance.

2.11 Tyrrell Engine: Yamaha Judd Nationality: British Key personnel: Chairman - Ken Tyrrell MD (Commercial) - Bob Tyrrell MD (Engineering) - Harvey Postlethwaite Year formed: 1968 Formula 1 debut: 1968 1996 car/drivers: 024 - Katayama, Salo 1997 car/drivers: 025 - Salo, Verstappen Address: Long Reach Ockham Woking, Surrey GU23 6PE

Founded by Ken Tyrrell and owned by the Tyrrell family, the Tyrrell Racing Organization history in F1 goes back to 1968 when it first entered the championship using Ford Cosworth powered Matras. After winning both championships in 1969, with Matra and Jackie Stewart, construction began on the first Tyrrell GP car which made its debut at the 1970 Canadian GP. In the next year, 1971, Tyrrell cars clinched the Constructor's Championship and finished 1st and 3rd in the Driver's Championship. Tyrrell has won a total of two Constructor's and three Driver's titles as well as the 1987 Drivers and Constructor's titles for normally aspirated cars.

2.12 Williams Engine: Renault RS9 Nationality: British Key personnel: Frank Williams - Owner Patrick Head - Technical Director Adrian Newey - Chief Designer Year formed: 1977 1996 car/drivers: FW18 - Hill, Villeneuve 1997 car/drivers: FW19 - Frentzen, Villeneuve Formula 1 debut: 1977 Address: Williams Grand Prix Engineering Ltd. Grove Wantage OX12 0DQ U.K.

Frank Williams began his Formula 1 career in 1969 at the age of 27 with his close friend Piers Courage and a private Brabham. They finished 8th overall in the Driver's Championship. Courage died the next year at the Dutch GP driving a car Williams was running for the de Tomaso factory.

After a disappointing partnership with Austro-Canadian oil man Walter Wolf in 1976, his new team, Williams Grand Prix Engineering, acquired a March for Patrick Neve to drive and Williams recruited a promising engineer named Patrick Head. Head's first GP design in 1978, the FW06, with Alan Jones at the wheel, was extremely competitive. Williams first GP victory came at the British GP in 1979 when Jones retired from the lead but Clay Regazzoni took the victory for Williams.

Williams quickly became the team to beat taking the Constructor's championship with ease in 1980, 1981, 1986 and 1987. Williams missed out on the constructor's championship in 1982 but Keke Rosberg did take the Driver's championship. Williams responded slowly to the turbo era and struggled through 83 and 84. In 85 with Mansell joining Rosberg the team improved through the year with the Williams-Honda FW10 taking the last three races of the season. By 86 they were back on top with the FW11 and, with Piquet replacing Rosberg, the team won 9 GPs (Mansell 5, Piquet 4) giving Williams the constructor's championship with ease although they lost the drivers championship to Prost due to the in-team fighting. The modified FW11 continued its dominance in 87 and Williams took 1st and 2nd in the driver's championship and the constructor's championship.

1988 marked the end of the turbo era, Williams switched from Honda to Judd for the FW12 and Mansell became the #1 driver partnered by Ricardo Patrese. Williams suffered from mechanical problems and in July 88 a three year deal was signed with Renault for their new V10 engine.

Thierry Boutsen replaced Mansell for the 89 season and won two GPs (Canada and Australia) in atrocious weather conditions. Patrese finished 3rd in the driver's championship helping the team to runner-up spot in the constructor's.

Having retired from Ferrari and been talked out of it by Williams, Mansell returned to the team at the end of 1990. The Canon Williams FW14 was McLaren's only competition and with 7 victories they finished 2nd in the constructors and 2nd and 3rd in the driver's. The advent of the active FW14B put Williams in a class by themselves in 1992. Mansell won the first five races of the season on his way to a still unbeaten total of 9 wins and 14 poles. His win at the British GP was his 28th beating Jackie Stewart's record for a British driver. Mansell and Williams won their respective championships and Patrese finished 2nd in the driver's.

In 93 Prost and Hill replaced Mansell and Patrese and retained both constructor's and driver's (Prost) championships. Hill also chalked up his first GP win in Hungary. Prost retired after the season and was replaced by Senna in '94. At the third GP of the year at Imola in Italy, Senna was killed when he crashed his FW16 while leading the race. It remains to be seen whether the Italian authorities are going to charge Williams personnel in connection with Senna's death. The team went on to retain the constructor's championship again but Hill missed out on the driver's championship by one point to Michael Schumacher. In 95, Williams lost both championships to Benetton.

Williams was dominant again in 96 with Hill and Villeneuve finishing 1st and 2nd in the driver's championship and thereby securing the constructor's championship with ease.

3. THE DRIVERS

3.1 Jean Alesi Nationality: French Age - DOB: 32 - June 11th, 1964 Born: Avignon, France Resident: Nyon, Switzerland Current team: Benetton Former team(s): Tyrrell, Ferrari

Alesi was born in France to Sicilian parents. Like many of his contemporaries he began his career in karts but at the relatively late age of 17. He won two regional titles and moved on to the Renault 5 Cup in 1983 finishing 7th with 1 win. 1984 and '85 saw Alesi in Formula Renault finishing 10th and 5th respectively. In '86 he competed in the French F3 championship finishing 2nd in '86 and 1st in '87. The next two years were in F3000 with Oreca in 88, finishing 10th, and Eddie Jordan in '89 finishing 1st.

In addition to the F3000 championship, Alesi also made his F1 debut in '89 with Tyrrell. He finished 4th in his first GP (France) and went onto score a total of 8 points for 9th place from just 8 races. He was retained by Tyrrell for the 1990 season and finished in 9th place with 13 points. In 1991 Alesi was signed by Ferrari where he has remained for 5 seasons with rather disappointing results due no doubt to the unreliable and/or uncompetitive cars that Ferrari has put out in the last few years.

Between 1991 and 1994 Alesi has scored 13, 21, 18 and 16 points respectively placing him 7th, 7th, 6th and 5th in the championship. Ferrari was much improved in 95 and Alesi finished the season with 42 points placing him 5th in the championship. '95 also saw Alesi's first ever GP win in Canada. In an emotional finish, Alesi brought the #27 Ferrari across the line first before an adoring French-Canadian crowd in Montreal. Many thought that 96 would be a break-out year for Alesi with reigning champions Benetton, but a disappointing car, lack-lustre driving performances, some bad luck and a few instances of classic Alesi brain fade, meant no wins and only fourth place in the drivers championship.

Jean is single with one child.

3.2 Rubens Barrichello Nationality: Brazilian Age - DOB: 24 - May 23rd, 1972 Born: Sao Paolo, Brazil Resident: Monaco Current team: Stewart Former team(s): Jordan

Barrichello began his racing career at the age of 9, competing in and winning various local and national karting championships between 1983 and 1988. In 1989 he moved onto Formula Ford and finished 4th in the Brazilian championship with the Arisco team. In 1990 he moved to Europe and won the Opel-Lotus European championship with the Draco team and in 1991 followed up by winning the British F3 championship with West Surrey Racing. In 1992 he finished 3rd in the F3000 championship with Il Barone Rampante. He joined Jordan in 1993 and despite high hopes , has generally failed to fulfill his potentital to this point. In '93 he gained 2 points, in '94 he finished 6th in the driver's championship with 19 points, his first rostrum finish and pole at Spa - the youngest pole-sitter ever at the age of 22. In '95 he had an unspectacular season finishing 11th with 11 points and '96 was little better. After qualifying on the front row for the Brazilian GP, he was running well before spinning out. This marked the high-point of his season and from there on he managed to accumulate 14 points but without a podium finish.

Rubens is married with no children.

3.3 Gerhard Berger Nationality: Austrian Age - DOB: 37 - August 27th, 1959 Born: Woergl, Austria Resident: Monaco Current team: Benetton Former team(s): ATS, Arrows, Benetton, Ferrari, McLaren Ferrari Now in his 14th year of F1 racing, Berger is one of the elder statesmen of the sport. His career began in saloon cars in 1979. In 1981 he competed in the Alfasud European Cup (finishing 7th) before moving onto F3 the next year. Berger spent 3 years in F3 and at the end of 1984 broke into F1 with ATS. He competed in 4 races that season gaining 1 point for a 6th place at the Italian GP. Berger signed with Arrows for the 1985 season and has been a permanent feature of F1 ever since driving for Benetton (86), Ferrari (87-89), McLaren (90-92) and Ferrari again (93-95).

Although he has never managed to win it all, Berger has had several successful seasons. His best championship finish was 3rd in 1988, his best points total was 49 in '92 which was only good enough for 5th place. He has a total of 9 wins in his career with a high of 2 in a season in 87 and 92. '95 was a disappointing year finishing 6th with 31 points. For the '96 season Berger returned to Benetton, the team for whom he scored his, and Benetton's, first GP win in Mexico in '86. 96 was not so kind though and an unreliable car, designed around Schumacher's driving style, left Berger in 6th place in the championship without a win - although he was leading at Hockenheim with only a few laps to go when his engine blew.

Gerhard is married with one child.

3.4 David Coulthard Nationality: British (Scottish) Age - DOB: 25 - 27th March 1971 Born: Twynholm, Scotland Resident: Twynholm and Monaco Current team: McLaren Former team(s): Williams

After a successful karting career, Coulthard rose rapidly to F1 through FF1600, F3 and F3000. As Williams test driver in 1994, he took Senna's place at the Spanish GP and in the remaining eight races he scored 14 points. He retained his seat in 95 and has shown much promise, particularly since being released by Williams and signed by McLaren midway through the season. He joined the ranks of GP winners with a strong drive from pole position at the Portuguese GP. He finished the '95 season with 49 points in 3rd place. 96 was a step back year for him as he struggled with reliability and driver errors and managed only 7 place being consistently beaten by team-mate Hakkinen.

David is single with no children.

3.5 Pedro Diniz Nationality: Brazilian Age - DOB: 26 - May 22nd, 1970 Born: Sao Paolo, Brazil Resident: Current team: TWR Arrows Former team(s): Forti, Ligier

Diniz raced karts for just two years before moving up to Formula Ford in 1989. '90-92 were spent in F3, first in South America and then Europe. He joined the Forti team in 1993 in F3000 where he spent two years before moving up to F1 with Forti in 95. As a paying driver, backed by his father's fortune, he has remained in F1 but it must be said that he is one of the better ride-buyers. He actually scored two points from a pair of 6th place finishes in 1996. It is believed he will bring about $8 million to Arrows where he will be a distinct and distant #2 to Damon Hill.

3.6 Giancarlo Fisichella Nationality: Italian Age - DOB: 24 - January 14th, 1973 Born: Rome, Italy Resident: Monte Carlo Current team: Jordan Former team(s): Minardi

Fisichella won several karting championships between 1984 and 1991 before moving up to the Italian F3 championship in 1992. In '93 he finished 2nd in Italian F3 and won the championship in '94. In '95 he raced in DTM for Alfa Romeo and was also signed as test driver for Minardi. He made his F1 debut with Minardi in 1996, sharing the drive with Tarso Marques.

Giancarlo is single.

3.7 Heinz-Harald Frentzen Nationality: German Age - DOB: 29 - May 18th, 1967 Born: Mochengladbach, Germany Resident: Monte Carlo Current team: Williams Former team(s): Sauber

Frentzen began racing in karts, winning the German Junior championship in 1981. From 85 - 87 he competed in FF2000 finishing 2nd in '87. In '88 he was German Formula Opel Lotus champion and was 6th in the Opel Lotus Euroseries. He spent one year in German F3, finishing 2nd, before moving onto F3000 in 1990. He spent one season each with Eddie Jordan and Vortex before accepting a financially attractive offer to move to Japan and race for the Nova team. In 1994, he made his F1 debut for the Sauber team and scored a total of 7 points in 15 races. After Senna's death at Imola, Frank Williams offered Frentzen Senna's drive but he turned it down out of loyalty to Peter Sauber whose other driver, Karl Wendlinger, had just been seriously injured. Williams was reportedly very impressed by Frentzen's loyalty and at some point, exactly when remains unclear, he was signed to drive for Williams in 1997 replacing world champion Damon Hill. Heinz-Harald is single with no children. (You will see posts referring to the fact that he once dated Schumacher's wife - before she was his wife, of course).

3.8 Mika Hakkinen Nationality: Finnish Age - DOB: 28 - September 28th, 1968 Born: Helsinki, Finland Resident: Monte Carlo Current team: McLaren Former team(s): Lotus

Mika Hakkinen has been driving since he was six years old, capturing 5 Finnish national karting championships between 1974 and 1986. He then progressed into FF1600 - a category which he duly conquered by being crowned Finnish, Swedish and Nordic Champion - the Lotus Euroseries and the British GM Lotus series, becoming champion and runner-up respectively. A year after entering the British F3 championship in 1989 he won the Macau Grand Prix on his way to the overall title.

He broke into F1 in 1991 with Lotus where he stayed for two years finishing the championship 15th and 8th with 2 points and 11 points respectively. He joined McLaren as Test and Development driver in 93, being elevated to the position of race driver for the final three rounds of the championship following Michael Andretti's departure to return to Indy Car. In his first race for McLaren at the Portuguese GP Hakkinen outqualified his team-mate, Ayrton Senna. He scored his first ever F1 podium finish with a 3rd place at the Japanese GP. In 94 he finished 2nd at the Belgian GP and 3rd in four other races ending the season 4th in the championship with 26 points. He finished '95 with 17 points in 7th place - not to mention a nasty crash during practice in Adelaide which almost ended his career, if not his life. '96 showed that he has recovered, physically and mentally, from the crash and he finished the championship 5th after several podiums in the second half of the season.

Mika is single with no children.

3.9 Johnny Herbert Nationality: British (English) Age - DOB: 32 - June 27th, 1964 Born: Romford, England Resident: Monaco Current team: Sauber Former team(s): Benetton, Tyrrell, Lotus, Ligier, Benetton

One of the most popular figures in F1, Johnny Herbert began his racing career in karts at the age of 10 winning two British championships over the next 8 years. He moved onto FF1600 in 1983 and FF2000 and F3 in 1986. In 1987 he won the British F3 championship with Eddie Jordan Racing and was signed by Benetton as a test driver. In 1988 he moved up to F3000 with Jordan, winning his first race at Jerez before being seriously injured at Brands Hatch. Despite not being fully recovered from his injuries he started the 1989 season for Benetton in F1 scoring a 4th and a 5th place before being rested by the team at mid-season. He returned briefly to F1 the same year with Tyrrell.

In 1990 Herbert was the test driver for Lotus and raced intermittently for the team for the next two years. He continued with Lotus for 92 and 93 on a full time basis and finished 14th and 9th respectively. He raced for three teams in 94 - Lotus, Ligier and then Benetton for the last two races. He stayed with Benetton for the 95 season and finished 4th in the championship winning his first GP at the British GP. Towards the end of the season, he complained bitterly about his treatment at the hands of Benetton and Schumacher. 96 was a disappointing year mainly due to the unreliability of the Sauber, not to mention the poor performance of the Ford engine, although he did make it to the podium in Monaco as the last of the finishers! Herbert has stayed with Sauber for 97 and with their new deal with Ferrari, this will be an important year for Sauber and Herbert.

He is married with two daughters.

3.10 Damon Hill Nationality: British (English) Age - DOB: 36 - September 17th, 1960 Born: London, England Resident: Dublin, Ireland Current team: TWR Arrows Former team(s): Brabham, Williams

Damon is the son of two-time F1 champion, the late Graham Hill. Damon Hill actually began his racing career on motorbikes in 1979. In '84, while still racing bikes, he had his first taste of auto racing in Formula Ford. In 1985 he switched to FF full time and finished 3rd in the Esso championship with 6 wins. He moved onto F3 in 86 with Murray Taylor Racing and then with Intersport in 87 and 88. From 89 to 91 he competed in F3000 with Footwork, Middlemarch and Lola without great success except that he did get a testing contract with Williams in 91 replacing Mark Blundell.

Hill broke into F1 the next year, 1992, with Brabham, again without great success. In eight attempts in an uncompetitive car, he qualified just twice finishing 16th and 11th. His big break came in 93 when he signed for Williams. That year he scored he scored his first F1 win in Hungary, completing a hat-trick over the next two races in Belgium and Italy. He finished the season with 69 points for 3rd place in the championship.

In '94, still with Williams, Hill came as close to winning it all as is possible without actually doing it. Coming in to the last race of the season in Adelaide, Hill trailed Michael Schumacher by one point. Depending on your point of view they either had a coming together or Schumacher drove into Hill thereby securing the Championship by that one point margin. Hill again challenged Schumacher for most of the '95 season but fell apart somewhat in the second half of the season. He finished 2nd in the championship with 69 points.

In 1996, still with Williams, he finally won the World Championship with relative ease. His only real competition came from team-mate Villeneuve who made a slow start to the season and was unable to catch Hill despite some impressive results towards the end of the season. The championship did go to the last race of the season with Hill needing just a 6th place to secure the title. Villeneuve gave himself very little chance after a bad start and Hill took an easy lead. The matter was finally settled when Villeneuve lost a wheel and crashed out. 96 was also a significant year for Hill in that he was not re-signed by Williams who announced half way through the season that he was being replaced by Frentzen. With very few options, he turned down offers from Jordan and Stewart and signed a one year deal with TWR Arrows.

Damon is married with two sons and a daughter.

3.11 Eddie Irvine Nationality: Irish Age - DOB: 31 - November 10th, 1965 Born: Newtownards, Northern Ireland Resident: Dublin, Ireland Current team: Ferrari Former team(s): Jordan

Irvine began racing in FF1600 and competed in Irish and British FF1600 series between 1983 and 1987. In 1988 he placed 5th in the F3 championship with West Surrey Racing. In 1989 he moved onto F3000 with Pacific Racing and finished 9th in the International Championship. He first teamed up with Eddie Jordan in F3000 in 1990 when he finished 3rd (recording one win). Between 1991 and 1993 he competed in the Japanese F3000 championship with Team Cerumo finishing 7th, 8th and 2nd with one win each year. '93 also saw Irvine's F1 debut with 2 races for Jordan scoring a point in Japan.

Irvine raced the entire 94 season for Jordan, with the exception of a 3 race ban for an accident at the Brazilian GP, scoring 6 points placing him 16th. He finished '95 with 10 points having suffered from unreliability including a fire from a re-fueling accident. In a surprising, last minute move he was signed by Ferrari for '96 over a gaggle of Italian drivers who thought they were trying out for the role. Eddie has embraced, and been embraced by, the team and its fans but with no testing and a string of embarrassing mechanical failures (nine in a row at one point), 1996 was extremely frustrating for him and he finished 10th in the championship.

Eddie is single with no children.

3.12 Ukyo Katayama Nationality: Japanese Age - DOB: 33 - May 29th, 1963 Born: Tokyo Resident: Tokyo and Monaco Current team: Minardi Former team(s): Larrousse, Tyrrell

After graduating high school in 1982, Katayama trained as a mechanic at the Tsukuba Circuit in Japan before switching to driving, taking class and championships in FJ1600, after winning his very first race from pole position. In 1985 he graduated to the All Japan F3 Series with the Nissan Hasemi team and finished 6th in the championship. In 1986, he moved to France competing in the National Formula Renault and French F3 series. In 1988 he returned to Japan competing in the Japanese F3000 Championship for Ba-Tsu Racing in '88, Footwork in '89 and Cabin in '90 and '91 - winning the championship in '91.

1992 marked Katayama's Formula 1 debut with Venturi Larrousse with two top 10 finishes. In 1993, he moved to Tyrrell where he stayed for four seasons with somewhat limited success. He scored 5 points in 1994 but in 95 he finished 4 races and his best finish was 7th in the German GP. Katayama was involved in a scary accident at the start of the Portuguese GP when he locked wheels with Badoer and was launched into the air, somersaulting down the track. He did not sustain any serious injuries and missed only one race. After a poor performance in 1996, high lighted by no points and a suspended ban for his crash at Montreal, he has moved a little futher back on the grid to join the Minardi team.

Ukyo is married with two children.

3.13 Nicola Larini Nationality: Italy Age - DOB: 32 - March 19th, 1964 Born: Resident: Current team: Sauber Former team(s): Coloni, Osella, Ligier, Modena, Ferrari

The consumate F1 journeyman, Larini has bounced around F1 teams for 10 years since winning the Italian F3 championship with Dallara Coloni and breaking into F1 in '87 with one drive for Coloni. He has competed in a total of 44 races with one second place to show for it (for Ferrari in '94). In 1996 he was Ferrari's test driver and as part of the engine deal between Sauber and Ferrari, Larini secured the second seat with the Swiss team.

3.14 Jan Magnussen Nationality: Danish Age - DOB: 23 - July 4th, 1973 Born: Roskilde, Denmark Resident: Silverstone, England Current team: Stewart Former teams(s): McLaren (test)

Jan Magnussen has been described by Jackie Stewart as "the most promising youngster to come along since Ayrton Senna." He ended his karting days in 1991 with a hat-trick of world championships and moved to England to compete in the 1992 British FF1600 championship for Foundation Racing. Having become familiar with the car and the circuits, he won 7 races in the second half of the season, including the prestigious Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch, and finished 3rd in the championship.

In 1993 after spells in the Formula Vauxhall Lotus and Opel Lotus European Championship, he made his F3 debut competing in two races for Paul Stewart Racing finishing 4th and 3rd. The next season, still with Paul Stewart Racing, he clinched the championship in the most dominant fashion ever achieved in the history of F3 racing by winning 14 out of 18 races - that season brought him the nickname of "Danish Dynamite."

In October 94, Magnussen drove the McLaren MP4/9 as a reward for his achievement and was subsequently signed as the team's test driver. Due to Hakkinen's appendicitis, Magnussen made his F1 debut at the '95 Japanese GP. He returns to the Stewart fold and to F1 in 1997 with the new Stewart Grand Prix team.

Jan is single with one son.

3.15 Shinji Nakano Nationality: Japanese Age - DOB: 25 - April 1st, 1971 Born: Osaka Resident: Current team: Prost Former team(s): None

3.16 Olivier Panis Nationality: French Age - DOB: 30 - September 2nd, 1966 Born: Lyon, France Resident: Grenoble, France Current team: Prost Former team(s): None

After karting, Panis moved up to the French Formula Renault championship in 1988 and won it in 1989. In 1990 and '91 he competed in French F3 finishing 4th and 2nd before moving onto F3000 in 93 winning the championship. In 1994 he broke into F1 with Ligier, where he has stayed ever since. 1996 marked his first F1 victory at the Monaco GP when only 3 cars finished.

3.17 Ricardo Rosset Nationality: Brazilian Age - DOB: 28 - July 27th, 1968 Born: Sao Paolo Resident: Cambridge, England Current team: Lola Former team(s): Arrows

Rosset did not take up karting until he was 22 and quickly moved onto Formula Ford in '91, Opel-Lotus in '92 and British F3 in '93. He scored his first F3 win in 1994 and 2 F3000 wins in 1995. In 1996 he bought his first F1 ride with the Arrows team.

Ricardo is single.

3.18 Mika Salo Nationality: Finnish Age - DOB: 30 - November 30th, 1966 Born: Helsinki Resident: London Current team: Tyrrell Former team(s): Lotus

Salo started racing 50cc karts at the age of 6, moving onto the 100cc Finnish championship by 9 and winning it at the age of 11. After 11 months national service in the army, he competed in the Finnish and Scandinavian F1600 Championships in 1987. In 1988 he became European, Scandinavian and Finnish champion, winning all 14 races and setting new lap records at every circuit.

>From 1989-1990 Mika lived in the UK competing in F3 with Alan Docker Racing. From 1991-3 he competed in the All Japan F3000 championship with less than spectacular results. In 1994 he joined Lotus for the final two races of the season recording 10th and a DNF in Japan and Australia respectively. He joined Tyrrell in 1995 and has finished in the points three times - two 5ths and a sixth. He achieved identical results in 96 as he was consistently let down by the Yamaha engine.

Mika is single with no children.

3.19 Michael Schumacher Nationality: German Age - DOB: 28 - January 3rd, 1969 Born: Hurth-Hermuhlhein, Germany Resident: Geneva Current team: Ferrari Former team(s): Jordan, Benetton

Michael Schumacher began racing karts with some success from 1984 to 1987. In '88 he won the German Formula Konig championship, finished 4th and 2nd in the German and European FF1600 championships respectively. 1989 was an interesting year competing in the German F3 championship - he finished 3rd behind Wendlinger and Frentzen. He continued in F3 the next year and won the championship with 5 wins.

1991 marked his F1 debut with Jordan and then with Benetton for the rest of the season from Italy onwards. (There is still a pending lawsuit filed by Eddie Jordan regarding Schumacher's move to Benetton). He finished the year with 4 points. Schumacher began to show his potential in 92 winning his first GP and coming 3rd in the driver's championship. The next year again produced one win and he finished 4th in the championship.

1994 of course marked Schumacher's first world championship amidst much controversy and last year he easily repeated this feat helping Benetton to the constructors title in the process.

In the biggest move of the 96 season, Schumacher took his number 1 to Ferrari, vowing to bring a championship back to the Scuderia. 96 was a mixed year. He won three races, including a spectacular drive in the "rain in Spain" but there was also a string of mechanical failures including a parade-lap retirement and a half-shaft falling off in the pit-lane. Despite this, he managed to 3rd place in the championship - the 1st of the non- Williams!

Michael is married with one child.

3.20 Ralf Schumacher Nationality: German Age - DOB: 21 - June 30th, 1975 Born: Hurth-Hermuhlheim, Germany Resident: Current team: Jordan Former team(s): None

1996 Formula Nippon champion.

Ralf is single.

3.21 Vincenzo Sospiri Nationality: Italian Age - DOB: 30 - October 9th, 1966 Born: Resident: Current team: Lola Former team(s): Benetton (test)

After karting from 1982-87, Sospiri moved up to Formula Ford in 1988 finishing 2nd in the British championship. In 89 and 90 he competed in British F3 and the Opel-Lotus Euroseries. In 91 he competed, without distinction in F3000, and in 92 he finished 5th in the Italian F3 championship. From 93-95 he again competed in F3000 finishing 7th and 4th before winning the championship in 95 earning himself the Benetton testing job in 1996. 1997 marks his F1 debut with Lola.

3.22 Jarno Trulli Nationality: Italian Age - DOB: 22 - July 13th, 1974 Born: Pescara, Italy Resident: Francavilla (Chieti) Current team: Minardi Former team(s): None

As with most F1 drivers, Trulli began his racing career in karts at the age of 9. In 1995 he drove 6 F3 races for the MKS team and the next year drove a full F3 season for the Benetton Junior team, winning the championship. 1997 marks Trulli's F1 debut with the Minardi team.

Jarno is single.

3.23 Jos Verstappen Nationality: Dutch Age - DOB: 25 - March 4th, 1972 Born: Montfort (Lb), The Netherlands Resident: Monaco Current team: Tyrrell Former team(s): Benetton, Simtek (5 races), Arrows

Jos took up karting at the age of 10 winning four Dutch, as well as Belgian and European, titles. In 1992 he graduated to Formula Opel Lotus, winning 10 of 19 races on the way to becoming Dutch champion, Benelux champion, International Nations Cup winner and Dutch driver of the year.

In 1993 he raced Formula Atlantic in New Zealand over the winter, winning 3 out of 10 races in an extremely outdated car and finishing 4th in the International Championship. He returned to Europe to win the German F3 championship, winning 8 of 20 races. He was invited to test with the Arrows and McLaren teams.

In 1994 he was signed as a test driver by Benetton and made his F1 debut in Brazil, stepping in for the injured JJ Lehto. In 10 races he had two 3rd places and one 5th. In 1995 he was transferred by Benetton to the Simtek team and he drove five races before the uncompetitive team folded. His best result was 12th in Barcelona. In 1996 he had another difficult season scoring an early 6th place at Argentina but failing to score any more points as the ddvelopment of the car was halted with the sale of the team to Tom Walkinshaw.

Jos is married with no children.

3.24 Jacques Villeneuve Nationality: Canadian Age - DOB: 25 - April 9th, 1971 Born: St. Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, Canada Resident: Monaco Current team: Williams Former team(s): Indycar - Team Green

Jacques Villeneuve, son of legendary F1 driver Gilles Villeneuve, is the talk of the F1 world this year as he attempts to become the first successful Indycar transplant since Mario Andretti. His meteoric rise through motor racing's ranks culminated last year when he became the youngest ever, and first Canadian, PPG Indycar champion.

His career began in Italian Group N Saloons in 1988. He quickly moved on to F3 in Italy in 1989 where he stayed for three seasons. In 1992 he moved to Japanese F3 and finished the season in 2nd place. In '93 he moved to the American Toyota Atlantic Championship and had a very impressive season being named Rookie of the Year. In 15 races he had seven poles and five wins and finished third in the championship. Villeneuve moved with Team Green to Indycar in '94. He finished the season with a win, 2nd at the Indianapolis 500 and 6th place in the championship earning him Rookie of the Year honors. He fulfilled his potential in 95 winning the championship with four wins including the Indianapolis 500.

In his F1 debut he took pole and was only prevented from winning when a slight off caused an oil leak and he had to slow and allow team-mate Hill to pass him for the win. He went onto win four races and took the championship all the way to the last race although a poor start had almost guaranteed Hill the championship before a lost wheel took him out of the race altogether. He stays with Williams for the 97 season and is the clear favourite to win the championship.

Jacques is single.

-- The hoopiest site in the whole, wide web. The F1 FAQ, circuit maps, pictures, naked women and the incomparable "Formula One Insider." OK. So four out of five aint bad. http://www.ultranet.com/~mitchmcc

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Eddie Irvine , Giancarlo Fisichella , Jarno Trulli , Ralf Schumacher , Jos Verstappen , Johnny Herbert , Michael Schumacher , Heinz-Harald Frentzen , Rubens Barrichello , Jean Alesi , David Coulthard , Mika Hakkinen , Olivier Panis , Jacques Villeneuve , Stefan Johansson , Jan Magnussen , Karl Wendlinger , Eddie Cheever , Michael Andretti , Tarso Marques , Eddie Jordan , Gerhard Berger , Mika Salo , Christian Fittipaldi , Shinji Nakano , Martin Brundle , Jackie Stewart , Bruce McLaren , Ricardo Rosset , Alain Prost , Alan Jones , Ayrton Senna , Thierry Boutsen , Andrea de Cesaris , Damon Hill , Michele Alboreto , Alessandro Nannini , Patrick Head , Keke Rosberg , Flavio Briatore , Ukyo Katayama , Peter Sauber , Jackie Oliver , Frank Williams , Giovanni Lavaggi , Paul Stewart , Gianni Morbidelli , Patrick Neve , Paolo Barilla , David Sears , Nicola Larini , Adrian Campos , Graham Hill , Vincenzo Sospiri , Jean Todt , Clay Regazzoni , Bernie Ecclestone , Adrian Newey , Gary Anderson , Tom Walkinshaw , JJ Lehto , Pedro Diniz
Teams Ferrari , Mercedes , Sauber , McLaren , Williams , Benetton , Minardi , Stewart Grand Prix , Jordan